Monday, September 05, 2005

More Supplements to Keep Your Brain Buffed!

Here are three more proven natural supplements. Each has been proven effective in double blind studies (the gold standard of scientific research).

Choline for More Memory

Some of us are concerned about declines in memory. Personally, I know that my memory can never be strong enough. Research has shown that the level of phosphatidylcholine (PC) declines in the brain as we age. Choline helps form PC. Choline is found in eggs, fish, nuts, meats and vegetables.

Most people get roughly 300 to 900 mg per day from their diet. If you have a normal diet with adequate representation from all the food groups, you probably do not need a choline supplement.

Recommended daily dose: You should be getting enough from your diet. If you are not getting enough, or if you want to try a supplement, 250 mg per day is a good dose to start at. You can work your way up to 500 mg with a goal to increase mental clarity and memory. Potential side effects include gastrointestinal distress, nausea, sweating and loss of appetite.

St. Johns Wort

This herbal extract has been around for a long time. In a study published in 2005 in the British Medical Journal, it was shown to be as effective as a common antidepressant in dealing with depression. Patients were given a dose of 900 mg per day of St. Johns Wort (hypericum extract) for 6 weeks. 71% of these patients showed significant improvement in their symptoms. It is typically much better tolerated than the traditional prescription drugs commonly prescribed for depression.


In patients who had NO response to a prescription antidepressant, SAM-e helped reduce the symptoms of depression by 50% in half of the participants at a study at Massachusetts General Hospital. It?s thought that SAM-e may help to produce the chemical messengers that reduce depression. If a prescription antidepressant is NOT helping your depression, ask your doctor about the possibility of adding SAM-e to your list of meds.

Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend!

All my best,

Dr. John


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